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Water Tanks for Water Security
Water Tanks help for Water Security – Climate change and an increasing world population are global challenges we face. Water is our most valuable resource and water is becoming scarcer; too many people do not have access to clean water and many people die every year from bacterial diseases associated with unclean water.
We trade water with every import and export we make – whether it is in the production of cotton for our clothes or food for our tables.
But there are ways we can make our own contribution to saving water and using it at source and effectively, ways we can manage our water, in industry and on our farms and in our homes.
In this article, we are going to look at what we can do as farmers, homeowners & industry.
What do we mean by water security?
Scarcity of water is easy to define – a shortage of water or an imbalance between supply and demand.
Does water security mean adequate supplies of clean water for everyone? Or just the local population? Our planet contains enough water for everyone – but only if it is shared equally, and this will be one of the major challenges we face – and in the not-too-distant future.
It might be that water is scarce – or it might be that water is there but unavailable in the amount and quality needed. And we can all make a difference; we all have a role to play.
The shortage of water
There are areas in the world where water is scarce, where seas are drying up and many hours are spent fetching water for their families. Hours which are taken away from food production and caring for their families in other ways. At present, almost one in five of us, live in places where water is already scarce. And 500 million more will soon be in this situation.
Even in the UK we do have weeks where hosepipes are banned – and rarely when people have to queue up for water at a tap or have it delivered in bottles. In 1976 there was a severe drought – 45 days without rain in parts of Dorset and Devon and in Yorkshire water supplies were replaced by communal standpipes in the streets.
As Professor Benjamin Sovacool, Aarhus University, Denmark said:
“There will be no water by 2040 if we keep doing what we’re doing today”.
But we don’t have to keep doing the same thing – there are adjustments we can all make and rainwater harvesting on the farm and or in the home are two areas where we can make a difference. Rainwater harvesting can provide water for main requirements on-farm and industry, view more details here.
Global conditions for change
Working together to find ways to share this, our most precious resource is vital. For this to happen we need to recognise its imperative urgency in the following ways and more:
- We need to acknowledge that all of us have a role: governments, private sectors, you and me. We need to take a combined approach to the way we manage our water globally and at an individual level.
- We need to recognise that other developments depend upon water supplies.
- We need to look at how we trade in water – are there ways we can recycle and reuse other products that rely on water for their manufacture?
Recognising the urgency in the way in which we manage water, by the dissemination of better information and better education are key requisites to solving the problems of scarce supplies of water.
In the UK
Even here, where it seems to rain most weekends, we are facing increased pressure from increases in our population, increasing demands from industry and increasing periods of drought. We must increase our water security by reform to the water abstraction licencing system to avoid problems in the very near future.
Our population in the UK is set to expand from 67 million in 2019 to 75 million in 2050, and our summers may be, on average, 3 degrees hotter. Even when the rain falls heavily it can cause flooding – but do we save as much rainwater as we can?
UK’s abstraction licensing system
Water abstraction is the process of taking water from lakes, rivers and canals and from underground aquifers.
Over 50 years ago, in a very different world, the UK’s abstraction licensing system was designed. It has had some updates, but reform is urgently needed – now. Failure to protect our environment is one of the main results of poor abstraction regulations, according to the Environment Agency.
DEFRA suggest a “water shares” in its recent consultation paper; this would modify the system according to the percentage shares of the water available. Now it is up to parliament to ratify this proposal.
Steps we must take today for Water Security!
Provide information to consumers
Water metres provide consumers with information – and then this is allied the cost of water consumption falls.
Upgrade the infrastructure
Slow going – at the present rate our sewers would need to last 800 years! We need more modern design – and more speed!
Plug the leaks
According to DEFRA, in 2011 no less than 18% of our public water supply was lost to leaks – and they are a significant problem in our homes as well.
Cut water usage in energy production
Electricity production is greedy for water. The production of electricity is one of the major uptakes of water.
Mandatory appliance efficiency
We have the knowledge to make efficient machines – we should use it!
New-build houses should have water-efficient features such as showers and toilets. This could cut the average person’s water use to 100 litres per day (from 420 litres).
Do we want/need more reservoirs?
No new reservoirs have been built since the water industry was privatised in 1989. Do you want one in your backyard? Most of us would object, but they do have their tourist attractions. With the increase in our population, we may be forced to build more reservoirs – but if we manage our water better, harvesting rainwater on site where it will be used, we may reduce the need for them.
When you reduce your dependence on the mains water supply, you are reducing their need to build new dams, drowning valleys to make new reservoirs, and reducing the strain on their infrastructure.
In addition, when we use the rain we collect on site – the wear on the mains infrastructure is reduced and the cost of transporting water is cut to virtually nil, once the system is set up and running.
The river basement plan
In 2009 a river basement management plan was made for every river basement district. This is reviewed every 6 years. The purpose is to ensure good ecological conditions.
This means controlling the run-off into our rivers and lakes, thus protecting the plants and animals who live there. Good management should also help to prevent local flooding and scouring of the creeks. By harvesting rainwater, we can reduce the run-off and thus help to prevent flooding and maintain the quality of water in the natural environment.
On the farm
Agriculture uses a lot of water! Why not harvest the most valuable crop of all – rainwater?
Here are some of the benefits:
- Economic – water bills are likely to rise. Saving of up to 50% might be possible once the installation cost has been paid off.
- Reduces the amount of rainwater entering your slurry store and thus decreasing your volume of slurry.
- Reduces the amount of water running across your yard – which needs to be disposed of at a cost.
- No treatment additives are needed for many uses of rainwater. (UV treatment and filtration may be required for some crops and animal care.)
- Crops do well with this clean, chemical-free water.
- It is good for the environment.
- Reduces the need for mains water- reservoirs, desalination plants and all the infrastructure.
- You have a supply on hand when there are periods of drought, and these are likely to increase.
View The Basics of Rainwater Harvesting Systems for Livestock Farms here
In your home
There are probably many ways you can stop wasting water. This article from Forbes may give you some ideas, but catching the rain that falls on your roof and storing it in well designed and well-constructed rainwater storage tanks can reduce your water bill, as water tanks help for water security and protect you when there are water shortages since you have your own store safe at hand.
A couple of statistics for you:
- We flush 740 billion litres of water down the toilet – rainwater would do the job just as well.
- On average we use 142 litres per person of water per day – that’s a lot of water.
- We use more water on our showers than in our toilets. (25% as opposed to 22%). If we all spend one minute less in the shower, we could save 600 million litres of water every DAY.
View Water Tanks help for Water Security – The Basics of Domestic Rainwater Harvesting here
The tanks to store the rainwater
One crucial aspect of rainwater harvesting is having the right tanks to store it in. You will probably need at least a filter to collect and retain the debris the water brings on from the roof and any pollutants it may have collected from the atmosphere. You will need the necessary guttering and pipework, and, depending upon where you situate your tank you will need pumps to bring the water up.
How Enduramaxx can help
Enduramaxx manufactures a range of tanks designed for storing rainwater above and below ground and for potable drinking water.
Our large collection of high-quality rainwater tanks includes all kinds of shapes and sizes from 50 litres to combination tanks up to 120,000 litres available here. There are so many uses for your rainwater: irrigating crops, flushing toilets, washing your vehicles or clothes.
Our potable drinking water tanks range from above-ground tanks to attic tanks, and flat bottomed tanks to slimline tanks – and we have water bowsers of you need to transport your drinkable water to an outdoor concert, building sites or for livestock here.
Water tanks help for water security however if you can’t see exactly what you want, tell us and we can design and manufacture bespoke tanks for you. To discuss your specific needs why not give us a ring on 01778 562810 to discuss how we can help you.
How we all have a role in Water Security
We all have a role to play. Wasting less water in our farms and in our homes, collecting rainwater to reduce the strain on our mains water supplies as well as pushing for legislation to make our use of water more effective across all parts of our society.
“Achieving the water global goal would have multiple benefits, including laying the foundations for food and energy security, sustainable urbanization, and ultimately climate security.”
Quote from the president of the world bank, Jim Yong Kim
Main image Istock